Thursday, August 25, 2011

Author Interview with Marlayne Giron

[Anne] Good morning, Marlayne, and welcome to my blog. Please tell the readers a little about yourself.

[Marlayne] I’m a wife, mother and Messianic Jew who loves Jesus.

[Anne] Do you have a favorite book you read as a child?

[Marlayne] I have several! Heidi, The Secret Language, Black Beauty and all of the Fairytales.

[Anne] I'm sure you've read a ton of books. Is there one you've read you wish you had wrote? If so why?

[Marlayne] Oh I wish that I had written Lord of the Rings. It is an absolute masterpiece and the “gold standard” in fantasy fiction. I read The Hobbit and the entire LOTR trilogy in a single weekend when I was 14 and wept, laughed and endured the pain along with all the characters. It is probably one of the most majestic and profound books ever written.

[Anne] Please share your favorite line or passage from a book.

[Marlayne] It is actually from the Appendix when Aragorn is ready to give up his life and Arwen is pleading with him to stay longer: “Lady Undomiel,” said Aragorn, “the hour is indeed hard, yet it was made even in that day when we met under the white birches in the garden of Elrond where none now walk. An on the hill of Cerin Amroth when we forsook both the Shadow and the Twilight this doom we accepted. Take counsel with yourself, beloved, and ask whether you would indeed have me wait until I withr and fall from my high seat unmanned and witless. Nay, lady, I am the last of the Numenoreans and the latest King of the Elder Days; and to me has been given not only a span thrice that of Men of Middle-earth, but also the grace to go at my will, and give back the gift. Now, therefore, I will sleep. I speak no comfort to you for there is no comfort for such pain within the circles of the world. The uttermost chose is before you: to repent and go to the Havens and bear away into the West the memory of our days together that shall there be evergreen but never more than a memory; or else to abide the Doom of Men.”

[Anne] When did you first decide you wanted to write a book?

[Marlayne] I was inspired to write my first book, “The Victor” 30 years ago while listening to an Amy Grant by the name of Fairytale. The verse in the song was: “two princes wage the battle for eternity but the victor has been known from the start”. After hundreds of rewrites and dozens of rejections I finally got to see the fulfillment of my dream when The Victor was released Holy Week of 2009. The rest of my books took considerably less time, with my latest, “In Plain Sight” being written in just four months. The idea came from attending a writer’s conference workshop in which the editor of Marcher Lord Press was talking about the “buggy and bonnet” books (Amish) and how he would really love to see someone do a paranormal Amish fiction.

[Anne] What has been the highlight of your publishing career so far?

[Marlayne] All the new friends I have made all over the country and the world. I’m not just passing acquaintances with a lot of these people. I pray for them, share my life and struggles with them and visa versa.

[Anne] What was the most interesting research you did for a book?

[Marlayne] For The Victor it was discovering that when a knight was “knighted” by his Lord, he was whacked really hard with the flat of the sword instead of tapped. The object was not to be bowled over by the stroke.

[Anne] What do you think makes a good story?

[Marlayne] The emotional journey is everything. If a book will make me cry, giggle and empathize with the plight of the characters as they go through the challenges of the plot then it is a book well worth reading.

[Anne] I heard you have a new release. Please tell us about it.

[Marlayne] “In Plain Sight” is Amish fiction with a very unique twist. I’m different from most Amish authors in that I do not live near an Amish or Mennonite community nor have relatives who are. It’s a “what if” story and the inspiration came from several sources, the writer’s workshop mentioned previously and C.S. Lewis’ sci-fi book “Out of the Silent Planet”. It is mainly a love-story but also combines suspense with a very inspirational surprise at the end.

[Anne] What made you decide to write a book about the Amish?

[Marlayne] I honestly just wanted to see if I could do it. It took me four months and until I got to the halfway mark it was like pulling teeth. After that it began to write itself and inspirational went into high gear!

[Anne] What are you working on now?

[Marlayne] I just finished a novella for Love Inspired called Plain & Simple. The premise is 30-something SoCal widow with teen, purchases Amish farmhouse for purposes of turning it into an Amish B&B and meets 30-something Amish widower who lost wife and children in buggy accident. Despite their different backgrounds and cultures, they are drawn to one another first by their mutually shared pain and then love begins to grow.

[Anne] Thanks so much for joining us today, Marlayne. It's been fun getting to know more about you. In closing please give us a short excerpt of your new book and let us know where we can buy it.


Seth and Silas stood up and went onstage to display her quilt to the remaining bidders. The auctioneer began the bidding at $300. One or two hands went up and the price slowly climbed $20 at a time. Then the bidding began to peter out. If others didn’t bid the auctioneer would have to call it sold at a horribly low price. As Rebecca scanned the seats, Katie Zook and her entourage entered the tent. They walked up the center aisle and took the empty seats in the first row. The better to ogle the brothers from, Rebecca guessed. She turned her attention back to the stage to find Seth staring at her; a ghost of a smile playing about his lips.

Watch this! Came the words inside her head as the auctioneer yelled out: “GOING ONCE…!” his gavel poised to declare the bidding concluded.

Suddenly arms shot up all over the tent and the bidding began anew; this time in earnest. The price began zooming up by the hundreds and in moments was well over the $2,000 mark with no end of bidding in sight. Rebecca could feel the eyes of her mother, father and Katie Zook upon her but she dared not meet their gaze. She kept her eyes fastened firmly upon the auctioneer who was now mopping his florid face with a handkerchief; desperately trying to keep up with the bids. Once or twice she stole a glance at Seth who stood stone-faced by the quilt except for the mischievous twinkle in his silver eyes.

“Five thousand dollars for the Esh Shadow Star quilt…do I hear five thousand and a hundred?”

Word quickly spread through the fairgrounds that an incredible bidding war had broken out in the auction tent. The news that a quilt was breaking all records for price emptied the booths and had everyone who was left running for the tent to watch. Every vacant seat was quickly filled and soon there was standing room only but the bidding showed no sign of abating.

“Six thousand, five hundred! Do I hear seven thousand?” The auctioneer was becoming hoarse and sweating profusely. Hands shot up again all over the tent. Now there were more than 100 people bidding on her mother’s quilt. Rebecca caught Seth’s eye. There was no doubt in her mind that the brothers were entirely responsible for the bidding war on the quilt; she just couldn’t figure out how they were doing it.

“Eight thousand!” screamed the auctioneer. The crowd let out an enormous cheer. The bidding had become “the” show and everyone was curious to see how high it would go and who would end up with the quilt.

Rebecca looked over to see her daed and mamm exchange alarmed glances. They had obviously drawn the same conclusion as she and were not pleased. They didn’t want to be responsible for taking advantage of people. Leroy stood up and stared down the brothers; making his meaning clear. Silas nodded and the bidding slowed down to two remaining bidders who seemed determined to win what was arguably the most famous quilt auction in all of Lancaster County.



Twitter: @thevictorbook